Monday, November 26, 2018

3 Inventions that Transformed Surgical Field

Operation TableThe modern medicine is capable of carrying out complex surgeries without pain and with minimal invasion of the body. The mortality rates are less compared to two centuries ago when modern surgery was taking its shape.

Before the advent of industrial revolution, surgical field in medicine was a very risky profession. The mortality rates were above 50% and surgeons were finding it difficult to stop bleeding, pain and infections. Industrial revolution changed it all.

The foundation for modern medical surgery was laid in this period. Many inventions in the field occurred during this period. Of the many, three inventions must be discussed here that transformed the field of surgery.

1.      Anaesthesia

Pain was the most common cause of mortality due to surgery in the 18th century. Surgeons used opium, alcohol and other methods to numb the pain to vain before the invention of anaesthesia.

Invented by William Morton, anaesthesia was the solution for a pain-free surgery. It led to drastic reduction in mortality rates.

From general anaesthesia (that is total body numbing) to regional or local anaesthesia it advanced the field of surgery. Also, from injecting the chemical in earlier days to using modern machines to apply anaesthesia the infusion mechanism has evolved. The chemicals that provide anaesthetic effect to has changed.

2. Antisepsis

In 18th and 19th centuries, surgeons were perplexed by mortality rates even after the invention of anaesthesia. Though the surgeries were successful, patients are dying in large numbers. The common cause was infection caused by microbes.

It was Louise Pastures’s discovery which showed the world that microbes can be killed using carbolic acid. But, a large instrument was necessary to sterilize an operation room.

In 1871, an English surgeon named Joseph Lister invented one such device that can spray carbolic acid on the entire room. It yet gain changed the field of surgery and the trust on surgeons.

The modern day sterilization uses many methods to kill microbes and stop the spread of infections. But, as the nature wills, new threats in the form of superbugs are emerging for which solutions are being invented.

3. Operation Table

Operation tables are prevalent since 18th century. They made it easier for the surgeons to operate a patient. From standard immobile tables of the earlier days, they got transformed into height and inclination adjustable and motorised modern tables.

Apart form tables for general usage, specific tables for particular surgeries are available now. Accessories like foot and hand rests, anaesthetic screens, padded shoulder supports etc., for operation tables are a common place now.

These are the three major inventions of many that transformed the field of surgery and helped in advancing human lives. Feel free to share your insights with us.

No comments:

Post a Comment